The London Ultra Low Emission Zone is expanding on October 25th 2021, Transport for London revealed. This is the zone you pay to enter if your vehicle emits too many pollutants. The zone will therefore soon stretch from Central London to the North Circular Road (A406). It will also expand to the South Circular Road (A205).
However, the North and South Circular Roads will not be within the larger emission zone. ‘Vehicles using these roads and not going into the ULEZ will not be charged’, Transport for London confirmed.
Purpose of ULEZ
The ULEZ’s purpose is to encourage you to drive a low emission vehicle. Why? Because transport pollution damages the planet and causes health issues. On this basis, if your vehicle emits no pollution – or a modest amount – there is no charge to enter the zone. In contrast, if it does not meet the relevant emission standard the daily charge encourages you to buy a cleaner vehicle.
How ULEZ works
The Transport for London website enables you to confirm whether there is a charge for your particular vehicle. Simple enter its registration number. Also, as a guide it states there is no charge if it meets the relevant emission standard from the list below:
- ‘Euro 4 (NOx) for petrol cars, vans, and other specialist vehicles (up to and including 3.5 tonnes gross vehicle weight) and minibuses (up to and including 5 tonnes)
- Euro 6 (NOx and PM) for diesel cars, vans, and other specialist vehicles (up to and including 3.5 tonnes) and minibuses (up to and including 5 tonnes)
- Euro 3 (NOx) for motorcycles, mopeds, motorised tricycles, and quadricycles.’
The ULEZ operates 24 hours a day and 7 days a week (excluding Christmas Day). The daily charge is £12.50 for smaller vehicles such as cars and motorcycles. Note too that the charge applies even if you only make a short trip. However, there is no charge if your vehicle is parked in the zone but does not move (on the day). Also:
- road signs confirm you are approaching the zone
- there is no need to stop at a toll booth (cameras note that your vehicle has entered the zone via its registration number)
- you can pay the charge via the TFL Pay to Drive app.
Why ULEZ is expanding
Transport for London explained why the ULEZ is expanding. ‘Air pollution is not just a Central London problem’, it emphasised. ‘Many areas still exceed the legal limits for pollution. Despite recent improvements in air quality, toxic air pollution in London remains the biggest environmental risk to the health of Londoners.‘